Update may bring games, controller support to Apple TV this spring

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Apple's favorite hobby may soon see a long-awaited update that would add support for iOS games and Bluetooth game controllers, a new report claims.

Apple TV


The update could come as soon as March, according to iLounge. Apple engineers are said to be working on adding support for Bluetooth game controllers, which may indicate that the refresh would also bring a new fourth-generation hardware platform.

Without new hardware, the publication speculates that the set-top box could stream games from iCloud, similar to the ill-fated Ouya streaming device. The Apple TV currently features just 8 gigabytes of built-in memory, used for buffering high-definition video and audio.

Rumors of an Apple TV refresh also surfaced ahead of last September's iPhone 5s launch event with a tweet from journalist MG Siegler that stated "those excited about a software refresh in a week are gonna be *really* excited when new Apple TV hardware is unveiled next month." Ultimately, that update never materialized.

Apple's streamer is locked in a neck-and-neck battle for living room share with rival Roku, which already features its own application marketplace. The two devices account for 80 percent of the set-top market between them.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 66
    WOAH HO HOAH!! That would be awesome. Streaming iOS games from iCloud would be the bomb. I can Airplay some games from my 5s, but they won't go full screen. Really hoping this comes to fruition.
  • Reply 2 of 66
    adybadyb Posts: 198member
    I'd love it more if they would let me install some UK apps such as BBC iPlayer!
  • Reply 3 of 66
    I forget, does Apple TV 2 (first black one) have Bluetooth? I know it doesn't support the tap for settings.
  • Reply 4 of 66
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,227member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by starbird73 View Post



    I forget, does Apple TV 2 (first black one) have Bluetooth? I know it doesn't support the tap for settings.

     

    I think I used a wireless keyboard on mine, if so it does have it.

     

    that being said, its running a single core A4, so dont expect a lot of games to run smooth this. 

  • Reply 5 of 66
    starbird73 wrote: »
    I forget, does Apple TV 2 (first black one) have Bluetooth? I know it doesn't support the tap for settings.

    Yes. I use the Apple bluetooth keyboard with mine. Much quicker than using the remote.
  • Reply 6 of 66

    Sony plans to start its Playstation Now service this summer.  During the announcement said Sony was going to bring it to Playstation devices as well as Sony TVs.  It is possible Apple and Sony are in talks to bring that service to Apple TV/iOS.  Sony already has several iOS apps out relateed to PlayStation and Sony services.  If it plans to charge a subscription for Playstation Now, it is in their interest to make it available in as many places as possible.  AppleTV would open up a pretty big market and wouldn't involve working with its more direct competitors like Samsung or LG (Yeah, Sony makes phones but they are almost a joke).

     

    It also possible Apple is just preparing itself for the future or has its own plans to stream iOS games.

     

    Of course, there's also a chance the rumor is false. 

  • Reply 7 of 66
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,227member

    If they can keep both the games and its data in the cloud it would solve a lot of issues and allow to built a very low cost game console. Its a good idea *IF* they actually dont "stream" the games but just "stored" the games in iclould then download the game you want to play. Streaming means we get in VM's so it implied costly servers to setup.  VM's are good to replace corporate PC's, but games requires too much interaction between the client and the server and games absolutly must be responsive or it will be just bad... like airplay.

     

    If they do it I hope they release new hardware, like a 16g with the A7 so we can run decent games.  Currently, the ATV2 is running a single core A4 and the ATV3 is running a single core A5. I dont know how much ram those have but it must be minimal.  The old box wont be able to run games with intense graphics, just very simple games like angry birds or candy crush.

  • Reply 8 of 66
    Long over due, hoping this rumor is true and that springtime is the launch date.
  • Reply 9 of 66
    Holy crap this speculation is ill informed. Streaming games like ouya? What? Do they mean like OnLive? OnLive may have been on ouya, I don't remember. Otherwise all ouya did was play android games. Anyway, no no no no no. Apple is not at all about to do anything like OnLive. That sort of service is monstrous to set up and run and just makes no sense here.
    Besides why would apple do ANY if this when they already tout playing games over Airplay?? The Apple TV doesn't have the graphics capabilities of an iPhone or iPad.
    None of this comes close to making sense.
  • Reply 10 of 66
    schlackschlack Posts: 708member
    streaming seems stupid. cheap games on appleTV would rock though.
    they could sell 16GB / 32GB / 64GB versions to increase profits at $99 / $199 / $299
  • Reply 11 of 66
    asdasdasdasd Posts: 5,652member
    Holy crap this speculation is ill informed. Streaming games like ouya? What? Do they mean like OnLive? OnLive may have been on ouya, I don't remember. Otherwise all ouya did was play android games. Anyway, no no no no no. Apple is not at all about to do anything like OnLive. That sort of service is monstrous to set up and run and just makes no sense here.
    Besides why would apple do ANY if this when they already tout playing games over Airplay?? The Apple TV doesn't have the graphics capabilities of an iPhone or iPad.
    None of this comes close to making sense.

    It's an update.
  • Reply 12 of 66
    herbapouherbapou Posts: 2,227member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by franktinsley View Post



    Holy crap this speculation is ill informed. Streaming games like ouya? What? Do they mean like OnLive? OnLive may have been on ouya, I don't remember. Otherwise all ouya did was play android games. Anyway, no no no no no. Apple is not at all about to do anything like OnLive. That sort of service is monstrous to set up and run and just makes no sense here.

    Besides why would apple do ANY if this when they already tout playing games over Airplay?? The Apple TV doesn't have the graphics capabilities of an iPhone or iPad.

    None of this comes close to making sense.

     

    Airplay is the mother of crap for games....  its glitches, lags and its unresponsive.

     

    and it does makes senses, they can download the game into the ATV SSD, then run it.  Not great for big games but for games below 250 mb its not a problem with the current high speed connections. Or maybe some games could download on a MAC itunes (if available) and the ATV gets it from the mac.

     

    Onlive is a Virtual machine system where the games are runs on a server and the device just display whats is receiving. Since games involved constant game control inputs it must be worst than airplay.  Bad idea indeed.

  • Reply 13 of 66
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by starbird73 View Post



    I forget, does Apple TV 2 (first black one) have Bluetooth? I know it doesn't support the tap for settings.

     

    Yes, at least to some extent.

     

    Settings -> General -> Bluetooth mentions pairing a keyboard, which I have done before, and I'm pretty sure I've paired a mouse or trackpad before. I've always assumed the remote is done via bluetooth, but I really don't know. I've also assumed that the iOS Remote app works via WiFI, but again, it could use Bluetooth instead. I'm not certain.

  • Reply 14 of 66
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member

    My gripes with Apple TV have more to do with feature decisions than with anything else:

    • Why have the inventors of quicktime abandoned it's central usability innovation? ATV seems to ignore bandwidth limitations and only stream at full quality, even if the connection can't support it. I'm sure they want the best possible experience for users (high quality images) but ignoring basic usability at lower bandwidths is stupid. Let users ramp up to full quality as they are able to.

    • On the other hand, ESPN's streams can be completely unwatchable even if you have decent bandwidth.

    It just looks really bad for Apple when content from Amazon Prime streams fine over a slow connection, but nothing works works well on the ATV over the same connection!

    • I'm never going to use NBA, NHL, or MLB. Let me remove them (or at least move them out of my way.)

    • Let me rearrange my favorite radio stations (under "Radio") the way I want!

    • How about a web browser? I'd like to view FreeTV.com or Amazon Prime on my ATV (if Apple will let it stream properly) and stop using my computer.

    • Last, the UI aint that great. They could take a few pointers from some of their rivals' efforts. And yes the Apple remote really does suck.

     

    I hope ATV gets better. I want to like it. But frankly, I keep thinking I should just use one of the hacks (suggestions?)

    Presently I mostly use it to watch content that lives on my computer (only content in iTunes, iPhoto, etc.that Apple lets me watch) on my big TV. How disappointed can I really be? I only bought it because a refurb ATV was only a bit more expensive than a video cable for my iPt!

  • Reply 15 of 66
    thomprthompr Posts: 1,511member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DESuserIGN View Post

     

     

    Yes, at least to some extent.

     

    Settings -> General -> Bluetooth mentions pairing a keyboard, which I have done before, and I'm pretty sure I've paired a mouse or trackpad before. I've always assumed the remote is done via bluetooth, but I really don't know. I've also assumed that the iOS Remote app works via WiFI, but again, it could use Bluetooth instead. I'm not certain.


    The remote that comes with the AppleTV is IR, like most others.  I know this because I used it to train an IR universal remote.

     

    Thompson

  • Reply 16 of 66
    Hmm so possibly in March. And ios 7.1 expected in March. Possibly an event in March .
  • Reply 17 of 66
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

     

     

    I think I used a wireless keyboard on mine, if so it does have it.

     

    that being said, its running a single core A4, so dont expect a lot of games to run smooth this. 


     

     

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Freshmaker View Post





    Yes. I use the Apple bluetooth keyboard with mine. Much quicker than using the remote.

     

     

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DESuserIGN View Post

     

     

    Yes, at least to some extent.

     

    Settings -> General -> Bluetooth mentions pairing a keyboard, which I have done before, and I'm pretty sure I've paired a mouse or trackpad before. I've always assumed the remote is done via bluetooth, but I really don't know. I've also assumed that the iOS Remote app works via WiFI, but again, it could use Bluetooth instead. I'm not certain.


     

    Thanks for the replies. Forgot about the keyboard. I have been planning for about a year to grab a second Apple TV. Keep putting it off, strangely, since it's so cheap. But I keep telling myself at this point that there is bound to be a new one, so may as well wait.

     

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by thompr View Post

     

    The remote that comes with the AppleTV is IR, like most others.  I know this because I used it to train an IR universal remote.

     

    Thompson


     

    Correct. I trained my DirecTV remote to work with it. Made the mistake to use the volume buttons....  :D

  • Reply 18 of 66
    pmzpmz Posts: 3,433member

    Just let me connect a PS controller and bring on any game.

  • Reply 19 of 66
    I was surprised to see OUYA in the article despite my inability to play video games. I have a feeling OnLive was the intended target. I was impressed by the business model and early entry of OUYA and thought it had some steam behind it by supporters. I am concerned to start reading things without the technical background here. I have trusted this resource in the past. Please keep paying attention to the details.
  • Reply 20 of 66
    malaxmalax Posts: 1,598member

    I love how the headlines for these articles aways include "may."  When I read them, I always add the implied "or it might not!"  AI does this even when they attribute this to someone.  Maybe for a change of pace they could try "[source]: Apple will [do something]" as the headline.  Otherwise virtually any headline is true.  "Apple may go bankrupt in 2016!"  "Apple may buy Disney!"

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